Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [books]

Questions about the English Language, with the cause for the question found in books read by the Original Poster.

0
votes
2answers
31 views

English Grammar Books And Online Courses [closed]

I'm trying to improve my English grammar. So I wanted to ask for sharing some books and maybe online courses where I can learn, improve, and the most important recall some grammar rules and basics. ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Are the names of statues italicized in a books? [closed]

Writing a novel. Are the names of statues italicized in a books?
0
votes
0answers
34 views

meaning of “Above the falls” from Hawking's book

Quote: Falling through the event horizon of Black Hole is a bit like going over Niagara Falls in a canoe. If you are above the Falls, you can get away if you paddle fast enough, but once you are ...
1
vote
2answers
49 views

Why is there a comma instead of a semicolon between the statement “'I'm sorry, I don't cry as much'”?

I'm reading a book No Apparent Distress by Rachel Pearson and saw a comma between the following compound sentence "'I'm sorry, I don't cry as much." Why is there a comma instead of a semicolon? Is ...
1
vote
2answers
60 views

the meaning of “Better off for it” and pronoun “they” from Stephen Hawking's article

The quote is: But we should have been wary of answering back (to the questions of aliens), until we have develop a bit further. Meeting a more advanced civilisation (aliens from other planets), at ...
2
votes
3answers
131 views

Zero articles in movie and book titles

Can you please explain to me, why sometimes there's no article in the movie or book titles, even if these titles are singular count nouns. For example: "Junky" by William S. Burroughs or "Alien" by ...
3
votes
0answers
74 views

Why is the math in Winnie the Pooh's so poor? Is it deliberate? [closed]

Earlier, I was reading Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne and lit upon this passage: Piglet is so small that he slips into a pocket, where it is very comforting to feel him when you are not quite ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

What is the name of a written legacy of personal wisdom?

I am collecting the wisdom of elders, publishing in books their insights and stories, focused on the theme "What does your life stand for?" I wonder if there is a name for such books. Or if we can ...
1
vote
1answer
89 views

Use of made up words in writing

In writing, mainly seen in novel writing, how should we put a word that doesn't exist? for example, "We're screwed beyond levels of screwedness." Please don't tell me that's too unprofessional and I ...
2
votes
2answers
96 views

What is the term for a marginal letter in a printed book?

Sometimes there are marginal letters in old books that serve as sort of an indexing mechanism. An example is shown in the detail below: What are these elements of the book called?
3
votes
2answers
774 views

How should the name of a series of books be formatted?

I know that you underline – or if you're typing, you put the words in italics – the titles of books, and that you put chapters or quotations from a book in "quotes," but do you do anything to the font ...
0
votes
2answers
111 views

Is “Even so, we’ll keep walking” a valid sentence as a book title?

I was struggling to find a good title for a fiction I write, and a found this sentence in the english subtitles of a song. I'd like to know if it's a valid sentence as a standalone, or if it needs to ...
0
votes
1answer
365 views

What does “though less so ~” mean? [closed]

I’m reading a book about world history, and there is a phrase in a paragraph I have no idea: “They were mostly connected to productive hinterlands, though less so in the case of Perth than the others....
0
votes
0answers
168 views

Is the use of commas and and's in this passage correct?

The way the writer uses commas and "and" seems very odd to me, is this just some more advanced punctuation/grammar thing I haven't learned yet?
4
votes
2answers
710 views

Subjective use of 'was' where 'were' would be expected (and indeed is immediately used) by Hemingway

I've just encountered a seemingly strange paragraph in Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea, and I wonder if anyone can give me an explanation: If the boy was here he would wet the coils, he thought....
4
votes
1answer
178 views

For the life of me I can't understand this sentence from Anne McCaffrey's Dragonflight

To forestall the incursions of the dreadful Threads, the Pernese, with the ingenuity of their forgotten Terran forebears, developed a highly specialized variety of a life-form indigenous to their ...
1
vote
1answer
330 views

Am I interpreting these correctly?

Right now I am reading a chapter in Walden. There are two instances where I seem to be missing the mark because the summaries I read online (ie Sparknotes) do not corroborate the interpretation I'm ...
-1
votes
1answer
312 views

Is it right to call a chapter of a book an “appendix”?

In Think Python, 2nd Edition the author states at the beginning of Chapter 21. Analysis of Algorithms: "This appendix is an edited excerpt from ink Complexity, by Allen B. Downey, also published by O’...
2
votes
2answers
318 views

What are the specific words to describe lines/wrinkles/crinkles on a piece of paper or a book?

Are there any specific words to describe such things? Is it minor damages, wrinkles, marks, creases? Not a fold and I don't mean the crumpled ones that most people do before throwing to the trashcan, ...
0
votes
2answers
493 views

What does “secret handshake” mean in the context?

I've read the following sentences from a book: I wanted it so bad, I’d throw myself into practicing but somehow never got good —while other kids who weren’t putting in nearly the same amount of ...
0
votes
2answers
54 views

on the usage of 'connect' [closed]

In one of the very first sentences of Gravity's Rainbow by Pynchon ...feeling metal nearer and farther rub and connect... am I right that the word 'connect' is used as a noun here? if so, is it a ...
3
votes
1answer
595 views

What is the meaning of “Like a Lobster” in the following chapter of “The invisible man”

http://etc.usf.edu/lit2go/120/the-invisible-man/2071/chapter-2/ "Good-afternoon," said the stranger, regarding him, as Mr. Henfrey says, with a vivid sense of the dark spectacles, "like a lobster....
2
votes
1answer
343 views

Tense when talking about people's actions in a film or a novel?

According to the Oxford Dictionary, present simple is used to describe the story in novels, but does that also apply to actions being done by characters at a precise moment? Now I know that present ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

Word for the separation of two parties in writing?

In The Screwtape Letters, Screwtape divides the demons from the angels in his arguments. He describes them and then describes "our" ideals. What is the name for this? To split two groups apart and to ...
0
votes
1answer
319 views

Is the expression “as promised in the list” correct?

I'm reading the book Looking for Alaska by John Green and studying English grammar at the same time. As far as I know, we must use "on" with "list". Is it a grammar mistake? As promised in the list,...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

Can't understand two contradicting sentences in popular book

The following excerpted paragraph, from the original 1930s public domain version of the popular Think & Grow Rich book, reads as a contradiction that I'm having difficulty reconciling in my mind: ...
6
votes
4answers
851 views

What does this word mean in this passage from Frank Herbert's Dune?

I am only familiar with "faggot" being used as a slur for a gay man or as a bundle of sticks. Some statements in the preceding paragraphs that provide context: ...A predawn hush had come over the ...
-1
votes
1answer
355 views

Usage of 'just so' [closed]

There was this dialog in Don Delillo's Cosmopolis which puzzled me: (A little context, the main character Eric talks to his female bodyguard Kendra, who he had sex with just before, Torval is Eric's ...
1
vote
2answers
155 views

Grammatical interpretation of Don DeLillo sentence

I'm puzzled by these three sentences from Cosmopolis by Don DeLillo: Heavy trucks went downtown bouncing, headed to the garment district or the meatpacking docks, and nobody saw them. They saw ...
0
votes
1answer
139 views

The meaning of “with her small bitchs teats”, in “100 Years of Solitude”?

What does "bitchs teats" mean in the the sentence "The adolescent mulatto girl, with her small bitchs teats, was naked on the bed" from the fictional book "100 Years of Solitude"? The surrounding ...
5
votes
0answers
634 views

Notable English grammar rules changes in modern grammar books [closed]

Modern English grammar books like English Grammar In Use, first published in 1985, for example, has four editions till now, I am wondering if there are any notable worthy examples of changes in modern ...
1
vote
2answers
443 views

What does this sentence mean in flannery o' connor's short story? [closed]

I was reading 'A good man is hard to find' and I could not understand this: It isn't a soul in this green world of God's that you can trust", She said. "And I don't count nobody out of that, not ...
1
vote
0answers
559 views

Social Paradigm

It is come from the 7 habits of highly effective people book (2004) by Stephen Covey. He have mentioned Character Ethic & Personality Ethic are the examples of social paradigms. (Page 23) I ...
1
vote
3answers
139 views

Crow collects chunks of glass in a hollow tree

So I'm reading "Norwegian Wood" by Haruki Murakami and I came across this passage this line : "Like the way a crow collects chunks of glass in a hollow tree." In context: "Don't be silly," said ...
1
vote
1answer
145 views

Is there a modern book comparable to Crabb's English Synonymes?

EDIT: I am looking for a book to make a study of modern synonyms. @WS2 recommended what appears to be a book of exceptional quality, but it has great depth in a few topic areas rather than a breadth ...
1
vote
1answer
780 views

What are the characters called in a book

In English, we have words for the characters in something/the people acting something. An example would be "The cast of the film was very talented." Would it be right to say "The cast of the book was....
0
votes
1answer
152 views

“For only through assiduous repetition is it possible to redistribute skewed tendencies.” | meaning

To set the quote into context here's an excerpt from Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by H. Murakami. There was little left to do but lean up against a wall and count the change in ...
2
votes
2answers
11k views

What are the connotations of a “foot-washing baptist”? [closed]

In the book, To Kill a Mockingbird, the foot-washing baptists seem to be painted by Miss Maudie to be evil and to have a strict adherence to the "cleanliness of the soul." When Scout asks Miss ...
0
votes
2answers
145 views

Past Perfect usage

I'm reading a book and found this odd usage of past perfect tense in a speech of a character: "He never feels as if he knows, neither does he feel as if nothing had happened". My English teacher (not ...
-3
votes
1answer
41 views

One translating Problem? [closed]

What Does the following sentence mean? the BIU Fetches a new instruction whenever the queue has room for 2 bytes in the 6-byte 8086 queue, and for 1 byte in 4-byte 8088 queue I thinks it means ...
8
votes
2answers
708 views

“Olórin I was in my youth in the West that is forgotten”: what is forgotten?

Inspired by this question (which in turn was inspired by that one), to what name does "that is forgotten" apply to? Many are my names in many countries: Mithrandir among the Elves, Tharkûn to the ...
4
votes
3answers
99 views

Is there a term for the continuance of the later editions of a book?

Is there a term, or even a designated subgenre, for the continuance by a substitute author of the later editions of a book after the death of the author? Three example of such continuance: "The ...
1
vote
2answers
528 views

What is this word in 19th century dictionary? [closed]

I was reading a passage from P. Austin Nuttall's 1869 book, Dictionary of Scientific Terms, and from what it looks like, in both the PDF and Page images views, the word seems to be pseudostella. ...
-1
votes
1answer
213 views

When referring to an author, should I use their pseudonym or their real name? [closed]

When referring to an author, such as in a book report or essay, should I use their pseudonym or their real name when I am speaking about them or their works? Thanks!
3
votes
5answers
472 views

What do we call “easily readable books”?

I just wonder if there is a good expression to refer to an "easily readable book", like a simple short story or pocket book?
1
vote
3answers
89 views

But other things being equal, it is better for society that the girl is educated than that she remain/remains ignorant

I found the following sentence in Neil Stephenson's Diamond Age But other things being equal, it is better for society that the girl is educated than that she remain ignorant. (p. 164 in Google ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Origin and meaning of “chaff before the wind”

I've usually encountered the phrase "chaff before the wind" in the context of the Bible and the Book of Mormon. I would like to know where it originates from historically and what imagery should come ...
0
votes
2answers
101 views

what does “casting a long silver of gold” mean?

so, today I was reading this book and I came across this sentence: "At the very end of the passage, a door stood ajar, and a flickering light shone through the gap, casting a long silver of gold ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Great Gatsby - Thesis Statement [closed]

This is my thesis regarding the American Dream's unattainability.I need a fourth point at the end. Can somebody point me in the right direction? In F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby," the ...
0
votes
1answer
514 views

Has the English language changed since 1854? [closed]

I've started reading a book named Walden, published in 1854. I am not a native English speaker, I am Persian, and I want to read this book for two reasons: to improve my English and because I think I'...